Tia Carrere Opens Up About Her Experiences With Harassment in Hollywood

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Two-two Grammy award winner and actress Tia Carrere (Wayne's World, True Lies), joined the San Diego Morning News team on Friday to promote her upcoming appearance at the Asian Film Festival in San Diego. 

As more news comes out about high-profile men in Hollywood abusing their position and power for sex, Ted Garcia and LaDona Harvey took the opportunity to ask Carrere about her experiences coming up in Hollywood and if she was every harassed like that. 

Carrere recalled her early salad days in Hollywood and how some people tried taking advantage of her. But, one meeting she took with 90's action star Steven Seagal, stuck out in her memory after it turned out to be a lot more than what she bargained for.

"I went to an audition my singing coach had set up. I thought I was going to meet Steven Seagal in a bar at a hotel. And that's what you do. It's a meet and greet. I met at the Chateau Marmont at the Peninsula. This one was at the Bel Air Hotel and I think it's all kosher."

Carrere says when she arrived, she was told the meeting had been moved from the bar to Seagal's room at the hotel. Confused, she went upstairs where she said she was alone with Segal who began asking her how comfortable she was with nudity.  

Carrere demurred, saying she wasn't comfortable with that. 

The encounter is reminiscent to a similar one described by Jenny McCarthy who talked about her run-in with Seagal while auditioning for a part in Under Siege 2. Another actress, Arrested Development alumni Portia de Rossi, also tweeted that the actor told her how important it was they have 'chemistry' and then allegedly 'unzipped his leather pants' during an audition in his office. 

Carrere says harassment like that is a prevalent problem for women in Hollywood.  

"You have to be willing to lose the job. That's the problem. You have to stand up and say,  'No, I'm not comfortable with that. No, don't do that.' and then walk out. And it's so hard, it's nasty. It's a nasty part of the business." 

Carerre said that in the end, she managed to make some great movies that made her famous. But she says the lesson she took away from it all was she didn't need to put up with that kind of harassment. 

"You have to trust that you're good enough that you don't need to put up with this crap and that you will prevail in the end. And it's really, really hard, and it's really scary. But you don't have to do that. You don't have to stick around and have somebody do something to you or put you in a situation that is disgusting."

You can listen to Tia Carrere's full interview with San Diego's Morning News below. 

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